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High school football: Ben Lomond Scots 2019 preview

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Note: Ben Lomond finished with a 0-10 overall record in 2018 and was sixth in Region 11 with a 0-5 record. It did not qualify for the 4A playoffs.

Ben Lomond 2018 Offensive and Defensive Stats

OGDEN — Numbers, numbers, numbers.

Since the moment he was hired to lead the Fighting Scots football program, Lyndon Johnson’s almost singular focus has been to increase participation in football.

It is a battle that has been fought by many a Ben Lomond coach over the years, across many sports at that, and it is one that Johnson took on the moment he got the job.

“Just trying to get kids out,” he said. “Trying to get more kids in the program.”

For months now, the Fighting Scots’ new coaching staff have scoured the halls of Ben Lomond High School, visited the homes of students and done anything they could to increase participation in football.

The result? Success.

“It has been going good,” Johnson said. “We’ve got some pretty good numbers, for us. We’ve had practices where we have had 50 kids. For most schools that is not very many, but here that is progress and that is what we are trying to do.

“When they finished the year last year, I think they might have been fortunate to have 40 kids in the entire program. We are talking ninth grade to 12th grade, not just varsity. We’ve been visiting kids in their homes, trying to make sure they understand how important they are to the school and to the program, just trying to get them back.”

The success of the offseason, relative though it may be, does nothing in the way of guaranteeing an end to what is now a 23-game losing streak for Ben Lomond.

For Johnson, though, a successful season is about much more than the streak.

“For us, we just want to make sure the kids have a good experience,” said Johnson. “We do have enough skill that we can surprise some people. We have lost 23 games in a row, so one game, one win is a success. We are going to try to compete in every game and give ourselves a chance.”

Fighting Scots at a glance

Coach: Lyndon Johnson is set to begin his first season as the head coach at Ben Lomond. Johnson is the son of former — as in 35 years ago — Fighting Scots coach Ralph Johnson. Prior to his taking the job in Ogden, Johnson was a high school basketball coach for 15 years, the last five of which were spent at Northridge. He has served as a football assistant coach, however, at Ogden, Fremont, North Summit and Northridge. Johnson is a graduate of Rich High School and Weber State University.

Coach Johnson’s comments on new UHSAA RPI:

“I don’t know. This is my first year and I haven’t studied it a lot. I think there is some good to it and there are some things that I think we’ll have to see how to plays out.”

Ben Lomond Offensive Snapshot

Offensive coordinator: Lyndon Johnson

2018 offensive production: 16.5 ppg (23rd in 4A)

— 3 returning starters

— Triple-option offense

Key offensive returning starters

Anthony Flores (WR)

Is the only returning Ben Lomond skill player to find the end zone in 2018 and will serve as the primary outside weapon in the Fighting Scots attack.

Brady Walling (OL)

One of two returning starters on the offensive line, along with Xavier Garcia, Walling will be vital to any success on offense by the Fighting Scots.

Returning offensive starters

Xavier Garcia (OL)

Brady Walling (OL)

Anthony Flores (WR)

Offensive newcomers to watch

Dahlen Workman (FB)

Garrett Jones (K)

Garth Maddock (RB)

Kameron Portillo (OL)

Mckennen Bingham (C)

Zhane Espinoza (RB)

Devaughn Saunders (RB)

Isai Serrano (OL)

Coach Johnson’s comments on the switch to the triple-option:

“We are going to run the triple-option, so we’ll kind of look like Army or Navy, more so Army. We are just trying to give ourselves a chance with the athletes that we have and with our smaller linemen. It’ll help us shorten the game and control the ball. We want to give ourselves a chance.”

Coach Johnson’s comments on how skill players are adjusting to the new offense:

“The running backs like it. Most of the time we have three on the field. The quarterback is taking some time to adjust, but they ran som RPO (run-pass option) stuff last year. I’m not saying it’s the same, but you are reading whether to pull it or keep it.”

Coach Johnson’s comments on the Fighting Scots’ offensive line:

“We could potentially start two or three sophomores up front. We might be a little young, but we have guys who can move a little more. They have to learn to get to the next level (of the defense), not just the first level. They have to learn to get to the linebackers and safeties.”

Keys for Offensive Success in 2019:

Everything will come down to how well the Fighting Scots take to the triple-option. A stark departure from the spread offense run by the previous regime, the triple-option will rely heavily on the offensive line — where the team is lacking in experience — as well as on the quarterback. If there is a strength on offense it is at running back, where the Fighting Scots have multiple options.

Ben Lomond Defensive Snapshot

Defensive coordinator: Jared Barnes

2018 defensive production: 43.2 ppg (23rd in 4A)

— 2 returning starters

— 4-2-5 defense

Key defensive returning starters

— Xavier Garcia (DL)

The only returning starter on the defensive line, Garcia will be expected to lead an inexperienced, if promising, Ben Lomond line.

— Anthony Flores (DB)

Racked up 16 tackles a season ago, playing in the Fighting Scots secondary. Had his best showings against Stansbury and Morgan, when he finished with four tackles.

Returning defensive starters

Xavier Garcia (DL)

Anthony Flores (DB)

Defensive newcomers to watch

Dahlen Workman (DE)

Garth Maddock (LB)

Kameron Portillo (LB)

Mckennen Bingham (DL)

Zhane Espinoza (LB)

Devaughn Saunders (LB)

Isai Serrano (DL)

Coach Johnson’s comments on the 4-2-5 defense:

“We are going to run a 4-2-5. It is what TCU runs. It puts more DBs (defensive backs) on the field, so we can get away with having smaller guys in space. I ran it my last season at North Summit, when I was defensive coordinator and we had a lot of success with it. I was taught, I spent time with it and learned it that previous year, and it really helped us because we had similar personnel.”

Coach Johnson’s comments on utilizing hybrid safeties/linebackers:

“We are small in spots. These hybrid safety guys could, probably would struggle in the box, but if you give them space they are much better off. It works for us.”

Keys for Defensive Success in 2019:

With only two returning starters and a new defensive system, the Fighting Scots are in for a developmental season on defense. Key to any success will be growth along the defensive line, a group led by Xavier Garcia, and the ability of the team to find capable, rangy linebackers.

Coaches preseason Region 10 straw poll: Eighth

Deseret News Region 10 prediction: Seventh

Key Region Game: vs Ogden, Oct. 16 (Week 10)

Bottom line

It has been nearly three years since Ben Lomond last won a football game, Oct. 7, 2016, to be exact. Throw in a new coaching staff, and it is most likely that the Fighting Scots will be looking to build the program, prove competitive over time and perhaps defeat rival Ogden. Anything else would be a pleasant, if altogether unexpected surprise.

2019 Schedule

Aug. 16 — at Payson, 7 p.m.


Aug. 30 — at Morgan, 7 p.m.

Sept. 6 — TOOELE, 7 p.m.

Sept. 13 — at Cedar Valley, 7 p.m.

Sept. 20 — MOUNTAIN VIEW, 7 p.m.

Sept. 27 — STANSBURY, 7 p.m.

Oct. 4 — at Park City, 7 p.m.

Oct. 10 — at Uintah, 7 p.m.

Oct. 16 — OGDEN, 7 p.m.


Felt’s Facts for Ben Lomond High School

All-time record: 177-439-9 (66 years)

Region championships: 3 (1965, 1967 co, 1985 co)

Playoff appearances: 12

Current playoff appearance streak: 1 (2017)

All-time playoff record: 10-12

State championships: 0

State championship record: 0-3

Most played rivalry: 69 meetings with Ogden dating back to 1953. Ogden leads 48-22.

Felt’s Factoids: The winner of the Ben Lomond-Ogden game claims the Iron Horse — one of just seven traveling trophies currently being contested in Utah prep football. Seven of their 69 matchups have gone into overtime, the most between any two teams. ... Ben Lomond's Emmett White holds the state record for all-purpose career yards with 8,532 set from 1994-97. He also returned seven kickoffs for touchdowns during his career, another Utah prep record.


Last 5

  • 2018 — 0-10 (0-5 in Region 11 -- Missed playoffs)
  • 2017 — 0-10 (0-5 in Region 11 --Missed playoffs)
  • 2016 — 5-6 (2-5 in 3AA North --3AA first round)
  • 2015 — 4-6 (1-5 in 3AA North -- Missed playoffs)
  • 2014 — 1-9 (0-6 in 3AA North -- Missed playoffs)


Ben Lomond coaching history

  • 2019 — Lyndon Johnson (0-0)
  • 2014-2018 — Eric Alder (10-41)
  • 2013 — Aaron Dooley (0-10)
  • 2012 — Bill Mierzejewski (0-9)
  • 2011 — Don Kenyon (2-7)
  • 2007-2010 — Jeff Kilts (6-34)
  • 2005-2006 — Nick Howell (4-16)
  • 2003-2004 — Art Burtenshaw (6-15)
  • 2000-2002 — Aaron Tillett (10-22)
  • 1997-1999 — Guy Andersen (11-18)
  • 1995-1996 — Garry Walker (1-17)
  • 1991-1994 — Roger Howell (9-27)
  • 1989-1990 — Jerre Holmes (4-15)
  • 1984-1988 — Ralph Johnson (18-33)
  • 1983 — Holger Hansen (5-6)
  • 1976-1982 — Brent Belnap (28-38)
  • 1963-1975 — Al Kapp (35-74)
  • 1953-1962 — William "Twist" Jones (28-57)


Deseret News First Team all-staters the past 10 years

  • 2016 — Deontay Nish, WR

To view second team and honorable mention all-staters through the years, check out the Deseret News All-State Archives.